If you suffer from social anxiety, you know it can be tough to get through everyday life. You might avoid social situations altogether, or you might be in constant worry and stress when you’re around other people. Here are a few tips that might help you to manage your social anxiety and live a more normal life.
Identify Your Triggers
What are the things that make your anxiety worse? Is it being in large groups or meeting new people? Once you know your triggers, you can start working on avoiding them or preparing for them. Your triggers might not be the same as someone else’s, so don’t compare your anxiety to others. Everyone experiences it differently.
Challenge Your Negative Thoughts
People with social anxiety tend to have negative thoughts about themselves and their world. Challenging these thoughts can help you to feel better about yourself and your situation.
For example, if you’re thinking, “Everyone is going to think I’m so boring,” try to counter that with, “I’m interesting and have a lot to offer.”
Practice Relaxation Techniques
Several different relaxation techniques can help to ease anxiety. Try deep breathing exercises, progressive muscle relaxation, or visualization. Find the technique that works best for you and practice it every day, even when you’re not feeling anxious. The more you do it, the easier it will be to use when feeling anxious.
Expose Yourself to Anxiety-Provoking Situations
One of the best ways to overcome your anxiety is to face it head-on. Slowly expose yourself to the things that make you anxious, and work your way up. Start with small tasks, like talking to a cashier or making a phone call. Then, work your way up to more significant tasks, like attending a party or giving a presentation.
These are just a few tips that might help you to manage your social anxiety. If you’re struggling, talk to your doctor or mental health professional. They can help you to develop a more comprehensive treatment plan.